Guest Blogger - Sparkling in Second

Hey Everyone! 
I'm so excited to be guest bloggin' on Sandy's blog!
For starters, I'm Jen from
I {now} teach 1st grade :)

Since Sandy's blog is now ELA Everyday, I thought I'd post about something we've been working {well last year} in class during ELA time.

It's a scary entity, but I interpreted it as giving purpose to reading.
I sat down with my team and we created what we felt would be an easily implemented & easily followed close reading process.

{of course I made an anchor chart to explain it all...}

We are using this specifically in Social Studies and Science right now, since we type up and create our own units. We thought this would be easier for the annotated portion of close reading.

I created these bookmarks to help the students {& the teacher} to have a purpose for each of the 3 reads they would be doing of their text.

{click the picture for your free download!}

Here's the breakdown:
{sorry for my lack of pictures!}

*Introducing Close Reading*
I started with a bubble map with the word "detective" in the middle.
We came up with all the words we thought of when we hear the word "detective". There were a ton of awesome words like clues, solving, problems...
Then I related it back to reading. Looking for answers in the text, being "text detectives". 

And THEN...I pulled out the magnifying glasses. That just got things really rolling! I had them look at their pencils and tell me things they noticed that they had not before. I related this back to reading as well, how we have to look closely to find things we hadn't noticed before.

By the time I shared the anchor chart for Close Reading with them, they were eating it all up! They were overflowing with excitement to get a piece of text!

*First Read*
This is where we focus on the first read. Enjoying the text together. 
We also get to box-in any {previously given} vocabulary words we find as we read. My kiddos love to throw their hands up as they read when they spot a vocabulary word.

*Second Read*
This is where we focus on interacting with the text. I require my students to come up with at least 2 questions in the text {they place a ? next to the sentence where they have a question and write it in the margins}. I also require them to find 2 important facts they found in the text by placing a * next to it (we talked about what an important fact is, how it is a necessary part of the text, without it the text wouldn't tell as much information}. 

*Third Read*
WHIP OUT A HIGHLIGHT! Life is good ;) This read is where the students get to read through to find specific text-based answers to comprehension questions. They have to highlight the answer {we only give 2-3 questions, as to not have too much highlighter}.

Here's a sample of what our text looks like after all three reads.

*Follow Up*
Either after the Second Read or the Third Read, I like to put my kids in groups and have them discuss their questions they had in the text to see if anyone can answer them. Sometimes they look in other resources, happen to know the information, or take educated guesses. It's quite amazing to watch their interactions and little wheels turning :)

I didn't think my kids would love Close Reading so much, but if you set yourself up for success, things might just go your way ;)

Here are some excellent additional resources for any age:

Come by my blog for a visit anytime :)

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I want to thank Jen again... I know close reading is something that I am wanting to implement next year, so I really enjoyed this post for more info.


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